Date of Award

January 2022

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Public Health (MPH)


School of Public Health

First Advisor

Yasmmyn Y. Salinas


AbstractObjective: We characterized the joint impacts of maternal race/ethnicity and pre-pregnancy BMI on adverse birth weight outcomes including low birth weight (LBW), and macrosomia. Methods: Retrospective cohort study of linked birth data for the years 2016-2020. Maternal race/ethnicity and maternal BMI were the key exposures; we analyzed their joint impact on outcomes using Poisson regression models. Results: When using race-specific reference groups, the difference in risk between NHB and NHW decreased as pre-pregnancy BMI increased and additionally, the difference in risk of macrosomia between the two groups increased with increasing BMI. NHB women generally had higher risk of low birth weight as compared to NHW women at all BMI categories and NHW women generally had higher risk of macrosomia as compared to NHB women at all BMI categories when using race-specific reference groups. Conclusions: These findings add nuance to our understanding of the interplay between maternal race/ethnicity, BMI, and birth weight outcomes. Keywords Birth weight outcomes; pre-pregnancy BMI; racial disparities


This thesis is restricted to Yale network users only. It will be made publicly available on 05/19/2024